Thursday, May 19, 2011


In mid-April, my local hospital, John Muir Medical Center's facility in Walnut Creek, opened a new building, the Tom and Billie Long Patient Tower.

As a neighbor and a patient of this medical center, I've been following the progress of this new building for over a decade.

Just before it's April 17, 2011, opening, there was a big community open house where we got to tour the building. It is a beautiful state-of-the-art medical facility. Not only is the inside of the building spectacular, so is the outside.

Last week, Louie and I set out to take a walk around John Muir's new landscape, hardscape, and public art.

Keeping with the theme of the hospital's name, the landscape pays tribute to John Muir and his explorations in the High Sierra.

The following two photos are of rocky "mountains" with a waterfall that becomes a blue glass river leading from the mountains to the hospital entrance.

I especially like that there are many park-like areas around the building where people can sit, meditate, or simply eat their lunch. I've spent my share of time hanging around hospitals with nowhere to sit or relax or just have some time for myself. At John Muir, there is an abundance of seating areas, walkways, and interesting plants and art.

One of the most peaceful places to sit is in Sharon's Garden, a garden, financed by donations from Don and Sharon Ritchey. It has benches, inspirational quotes and a sculptural backdrop representing mountains.

The hospital faces both La Casa Via and Ygnacio Valley Road. These photos are part of the landscape along Ygnacio Valley Road and winding around to the La Casa Via side.

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